Category Archives: Favorite Things

Hope Heals + Summer Reading List

summer reading listOkay, you KNOW it’s a good book when you set your alarm for 5 am just so you can sneak in a few pages before getting your kids up for school…that’s just what I did to finish “Hope Heals”. It’s a book about a precious couple who walk through insane trauma, grief and despair, but as they do, they find that redefined hope heals.

I was worried I wouldn’t have the emotional energy to engage a sad story, but I was literally doing a victory dance (a silent ninja warrior-like victory dance, that is–never wake sleeping children!!) as I saw this couple make physical progress after devastation and be captivated by Christ amidst their suffering. I loved it and I think you would love it too.

And while I’m at it, here is my recommended Summer reading list!

summer reading list

  1. Hope Heals– Fabulous creative non-fiction which is my favorite genre!
  2. Practice of the Presence of God – Beyond helpful in bringing the presence of God into your every day moments.
  3. Emotionally Healthy Spirituality – The title does this book complete justice. Can’t recommend more highly.
  4. The Hiding Place – Corrie Ten Boom’s story of surviving World War II as a believer who hid Jews. Amazingly influential for my faith.
  5. Through The Gates of Splendor – The story of missionary men killed by the Aucau Indians but survived by their families and legacy of faith. Another Christian classic that has stuck with me.
  6. Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands – How broken people can help broken people. Fabulous read for those wanting to shepherd others.
  7. Faith Is Not A Feeling – Ney Bailey lost her best friends in the Colorado flood but found that faith in Christ is helped by our emotions and not dependent upon them.
  8. Sacred Marriage – Must read for anyone interested in becoming married or growing in married life.
  9. Brokenness, Holiness, Surrender – Nancy Leigh Demoss opens her trilogy of Christian maturity with how her speaking to the CRU national staff conference sparked a revival that our ministry has never gotten over. Great read for all people longing to grow spiritually.
  10. The Insanity of God – Another creative non-fiction book, this time about Christian persecution and martyrdom around the world. Can’t shake this book.

Those are my recommendations, what are you reading this summer?

What I’m Reading

I’ve been in binge-reading book mode lately. I typically ebb and flow in how much I read, but I’ve enjoyed reading so much this year that my books have trumped Instagram! I know, I ‘m shocked too.

Here’s the books I’ve had my nose stuck in so far this year and a quick bullet point list of my 2015 book list because I meant to post it in January!

what I'm reading

  1. All The Light You Cannot See: I try to read one popular novel each year so that I know what all the buzz is about. This one definitely captured my imagination and made me feel like I was LITERALLY in the middle of World War II, bombs exploding and all. (Was it the great plot or was that I was sitting in my car reading a chapter about bombs going off right outside Maurie-Laurie’s bedroom, when someone just backed into my parked car causing me to think I was about to get hit with shrapnel? I don’t know, but it wasn’t a great combo for stress levels that day.) I can see what all the rave was about but it wasn’t my favorite. Still can’t shake the description of a rape scene toward the end of the book, so I don’t feel like I’d recommend it. Save yourself 544, but do share what popular picks you’d recommend these days!
  2. The Insanity of God: Hands down, this is my “book of the year” and I read it in January. Best book I’ve read in a while. I couldn’t put it down and it wasn’t because it was warm and fuzzy. This book speaks candidly about the horrific things happening to persecuted Christians around the world, but it beautifully reveals a sovereign God in the process. It was a must read and our book club cannot stop talking about how much it has changed us.
  3. A Million Little Ways: I love Emily Freeman’s accessibly poetic voice. This book is great for anyone trying to figure out how to create art in their daily life. It inspired me to write for the beauty of writing, not to be read, shared or followed. I loved this book and think creatives alike would enjoy it.
  4. The LifeGiving Home: I’m a huge Sally Clarkson fan. She was on staff with Cru for a number of years so I feel like she gets me. This book is written together with her daughter, Sarah, and is an incredible resource for building an intimately rich, Christ-centered home. I loved this book and can’t recommend it enough. I am savoring The LifeGiving Experience devotional field guide that she wrote with her son because it’s just so good in helping me think through the practical steps to building MY life-giving home.
  5. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: We attended a conference this weekend based on this book. It’s a very practical tool for growing your marriage, working through conflict and connecting more deeply with your spouse. It would be a great supplement to The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller or Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas as they give a more Gospel-centered perspective, but could use some practicality.

That’s what I’ve read so far this year, what books have you enjoyed? Which titles are next on your list? I’d love to hear!

Books I read in 2015:

*Note: I just joined Amazon Affiliates, which means that the hyperlinked books are will kick back a small percentage to us at no extra charge to you! I recommend borrowing books from library first, but if you want to own these books, these links are a blessing to us!*